When it comes to buying horror movies on Blu-ray, we have one issue; we already own so many horror movies on DVD, that upgrading them all to Blu-ray would cost a small fortune. There are some titles that we have to own in the best format available however, and so we open to you our Blu-ray Archives which consist of what we consider to be Must Own Horror & Genre Blu-ray's.
The Shining (1980)
Discs: 1 50 GB Blu-ray Disc
VC-1 (14.68 Mbps)
Audio: LPCM 5.1 (48kHz, 16-bit)
English/French/Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish
Stanley Kubrick was a mad genius? Because Jack Nicholson's performance is truly inspired and over the top? The creepy twins? "Here's Johnny?" There are plenty of reasons to own this Classic, chief amongst them being that this movie is truly a one of a kind Horror experience.
Stephen King hated Kubrick's version of his book, because it deviated from the source material, and sometimes drastically. Kubrick had his own ideas about what the story should be, and he turned King's work into more than the simple Horror story than it was.
|I can't imagine a movie version without this scene.|
I personally much prefer the Kubrick-added maze element more than King's topiary animals coming to life. I also like Kubrick's ending better than King's; I mean, a haunted boiler explodes, killing Jack? That just never grabbed me.
In the book Jack goes after everyone with a croquet mallet instead of the ax he wields in the movie, which seems less effective and even silly to us. The book has no river of blood, no creepy twins in the hallway...
The point is that we liked King's book just fine, but as an experience, we much prefer the film version of The Shining. As drastically altered as it was from the source material, its layers of subtext, mood, and Kubrick's meticulous attention to detail made it a great cinematic experience for us.
|...and who doesn't love a good deluge of blood?|
I went and bought the Blu-ray the next day.
While the picture on this BD may not be perfect, it sure looked near enough perfect to us. Granted, we had just tried to watch the movie in its shoddy DVD form, so that may have played into our "wow factor" a little bit, but the movie truly does look gorgeous in its 1080p Blu-ray form. Everything appears lush and crisp, and made this 30+ year old movie look brand spanking new. Bottom line is that this Blu-ray transfer of The Shining is gorgeous, and if you love the movie and still own the DVD version, you really, really need to upgrade asap.
|He is even creepier in 1080p.|
|This scene actually had its own backstory in the book.|
- Audio commentary with Steadicam inventor/operator Garrett Brown and Kubrick Historian John Baxter.
- Documentary The Making of the Shining, with optional commentary by Vivian Kubrick
- View from The Overlook: Crafting the Shining
- The Visions of Stanley Kubrick
- Wendy Carlos, Composer
- Theatrical Trailer
As a Blu-ray, The Shining is a crisp and gorgeous visual experience that really needs to be on every Horror fan's shelf. It's not a perfect transfer, nor is the disc overloaded with tons of extras, but for fans of Kubrick's oft-maligned masterpiece, it is the definitive format to own it in. We came for the improved visuals, and got a solid, all-around package that left us satisfied.
If you like the movie in any way, shape or form, or are just curious to see what all of the fuss is about, the Blu-ray version is the only way to see it. We also urge you to check out the Room 237 documentary about the movie and its themes, because it truly enhances the viewing pleasure of the movie in a fun way.
|The Blu-ray Experience.|